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Last Updated: Wednesday, 7 May, 2003, 10:39 GMT 11:39 UK
Doctor sues rapper 50 Cent
50 Cent
50 Cent says he was shot nine times, including once in the jaw

Rap star 50 Cent has been sued for unpaid medical bills by a doctor who treated him after he was shot in 2000.

Dr Nader Paksima says more than $32,500 (20,150) is still outstanding after he treated the wounds and provided post-surgical care.

The shooting happened when 50 Cent was a struggling rap singer but he is now the biggest-selling star in the United States.

He has said he was shot nine times, including once in the jaw, which gave him his distinctive vocal sound.

Dr Paksima filed a legal case saying 50 Cent - real name Curtis Jackson - turned up at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center in Queens, New York, on 24 May 2000 "with multiple gun shot wounds".

'Significant surgery'

"Despite repeated requests for payment to date, the sum of $32,511.87... remains due and owing," Dr Paksima's lawyer Christopher D Galiardo said.

"He had significant surgery. Fortunately for him, he's doing nicely.

"My client provided very good medical care, and he [50 Cent] is in a position to pay for a very valuable service," he said.

50 Cent has risen to stardom during the last six months, selling more than four million copies of his album Get Rich Or Die Tryin in the US to make him the most successful artist of 2003 so far.

He was discovered by murdered Run-DMC DJ Jam Master Jay before being signed by Eminem and Dr Dre.

He says he took up the "family business" of drug dealing aged 12 and there are still people who want him dead.

Concert action

As well as the medical bill, he has reportedly been hit with a $5m (3.1m) legal action over a cancelled concert appearance.

He had been due to appear in Boise, Idaho, on 11 May, but backed out because he said it would be too difficult to get to and from shows on the previous and following days, according to MTV.

He returned the $50,000 (31,000) contract payment to promoter Solomon Hatcher, but Mr Hatcher said the cancellation irreparably harmed his business.

50 Cent's lawyers have also contacted a New York nightclub after a man duped the venue into thinking he was the rapper's booking agent, MTV reported.

The Sound Factory printed thousands of fliers for the show but received a cease-and-desist order from 50 Cent's label and booking agency.

MTV said the man got away with a $12,000 (7,450) deposit.

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